It’s dark, darker than the blackest of nights, quiet and still. There’s a hum from the street outside, rattling and buzzing through the walls. I reach for the light switch, fumbling as I guess the location. All of a sudden this once empty and darkroom is vibrant and cluttered with objects like they have appeared out of nowhere. Covers off, body in the shower, I get ready at my usual pace. Once decent enough to head out into the public eye we make our way down to the restaurant to grab some breakfast. Out the door, down the hall, down the lift, and around the reception area.
I reply with my best attempt at the native language.
It’s not the best.
She takes our room number and names and shows us to a clean two seater table. Before sitting we mark our territory and disperse out into the room, running and gathering all sorts of assortments of food; Pancakes, fruit, toast, yogurt, eggs, meat and much more. I stack my plate full, cautious of the overflow of food as I stagger back to our seats. The plate hits the table hard, making a thud on contact, expressing its weight. I leave it safe and guarded as I head back out searching for the hotels coffee source. Once found, I wait for two steaming, beautifully looking coffees to come gushing out. The smell alone awakening me from my sleepy daze. Steam floats past me as I begin to walk them over to our table, teasing the noses of each person I pass.
I would love to paint a picture of how I devoured plate after plate of food without restraint but I’m afraid the details are too barbaric.
Breakfast was over.
That Famous Triangle
After patrolling the streets of Paris, diving in and out of the metro system, we find ourselves somewhere near The Louvre. A place I am told of great importance in the art culture. Something I am oblivious to. As we follow the maps displayed on my phone, the air presents the sense that we are near. It’s somehow thicker here, full of excitement and wonder. Full of excited yet exhausted breath generated by the thousands of tourists that flood these streets daily. We pace closer and closer, sliding through crowds of people either coming or going. Entering through massive archways and out into an open square, stretching for miles. What I assume is the museum itself, vast and never-ending. My eyes clock the transparent, glass triangles in the distance and I smile. Incredible. People travel from all around the world to witness its unique beauty and peer into the art and culture of the world. Unfortunately, we didn’t have time to enter, but a glance from the outside satisfied our curiosity just fine. One day we will gaze upon what the Louvre has to offer, one day. We take our bodies around the side of the main triangle, towards the small two. Peering down their structures at the masses below. It’s here people from all areas of the world are gathered to take their touristic photos. Those you see plastered all over social media, here, there, and everywhere. I do the same. Getting into pre-constructed poses, trying to capture as many angles as possible.
Time escapes us.
We must leave.
Onto the next adventure.
Art This and Art That
We escape out onto a crowded street. Cars, bikes, buses, and pedestrians swarming in opposite directions. The potential this city has radiated from the buildings around us. I lead in no specific direction, we just walk. Hunger leading me, motivating me. We find a spot to eat. Some cute style, cozy little cafe, with irresistible smells pulsating from its kitchen. We sit and wait for the server to come over. A young teen, with immaturity seeping from his body, approaches the table. We order, we smile and we laugh. Soon we will be fed and the day can continue as it was.
Walking through the streets of Paris after filling my stomach with food, was both a good and bad idea. I bob along, looking like I’m about to burst, food twisting and turning within. The walk equally making me feel better and worse. We are headed to get some more art in our systems. Why not, Paris is definitely the place for it. My phone slides into my hand and I have our next destination secured. Through streets long and short, thick and thin, crowded and quiet. We walked them all. Each step offering more experience than the last. Each breath more exciting than its elder. Twenty minutes, ten minutes, five… we arrive.
In front of me, I see it. I see all of it. Its uniqueness, its beauty, its radiating creativity. My eyes skimming and scanning every inch of the outside for a way in, I can’t. The building I’m looking at seems to be made up of hundreds of metal pipes, all shapes, sizes
You Got A Friend In Me
We wait patiently for this never-ending line to get shorter. We wait in anticipation of never getting in the front door. It’s getting late and the sun is starting to cast its dark shadows on the innocent buildings above. I start to think of a backup plan. A plan for the possibility of not getting in today. As my mind searches and thinks up other potential activities we could do. A small French woman approaches us. This woman has literally appeared out of nowhere, majestic and magical.
(In the most authentic and traditional French-English accent)
“You guys do know there’s another entrance around the back”
As soon as her words slipped off the tip of her tongue she was gone, majestic and magical.
Do we trust her knowledge? She has nothing to benefit and nothing to lose… we do. Once we step out, our place in line is lost along with the possibility of glancing at the art inside. Time ticks away, the day slipping right before our eyes. I take a long calculated breath. Let’s do it.
In the minutes that follow we found ourselves rushing out of the line, around the side of the building and at the second mythical entrance. The entrance we didn’t expect to be here. The entrance that right now feels as though it’s too good to be true. Bags open, pockets searched, bodies scanned.
We are in.
We are here.
We are ready.